Here are the 5 most cringe-worthy arguments Republicans have made about Trumpcare this week
Congressional Republicans have been getting hammered from all sides this week after they unveiled an Obamacare replacement plan that has left both liberals and hard-line conservatives fiercely opposed.
Republicans worked quickly to defend their proposed bill, and in doing so have made a number of horrendous arguments that will have Democratic political strategists rubbing their hands at the thought of using them in attack ads for the 2018 midterm elections.
Below are five of the GOP’s most cringe-worthy Trumpcare quotes.
1. Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) says that, under Trumpcare, poor Americans will have to sacrifice their iPhones.
“You know what, Americans have choices, and they’ve got to make a choice,” he told CNN on Tuesday. “And so maybe, rather than getting that new iPhone that they just love and want to go spend hundreds of dollars on, maybe they should invest in their own health care.”
Of course, buying health care is much different from buying an iPhone.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, the average premium for an individual health care plan in the United States is just over $235 per month. Buying an iPhone 7 through a wireless carrier and paying for it in installments over a two-year period costs $27 per month.
2. Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) thinks it’s unfair that men have to pay for women’s prenatal care.
During a debate on Trumpcare this week, Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA) asked his Republican colleagues to list any of the regulations within Obamacare that they found to be truly onerous.
That’s when Shimkus piped up to say, “What about men having to purchase prenatal care?”
Doyle seemed taken aback by Shimkus’s suggestion that men shouldn’t have to pay to help take care of the women they impregnate, and he went onto point out that no insurance company in the world offers “a la carte” insurance where you can specifically opt out of paying for prenatal care.
3. Paul Ryan complains that Obamacare involves younger, healthier people subsidizing older, sicker people.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) gave a PowerPoint presentation on Thursday in which he said that Obamacare had a fatal flaw: That it counted on healthy people to pay for the care of sick people.
“The fatal conceit of Obamacare is that we’re just going to make everybody buy our health insurance at the federal government level,” he said. “Young and healthy people are going to go into the market and pay for the older, sicker people. So the young, healthy person is going to be made to buy healthcare, and they’re going to pay for the person, you know, who gets breast cancer in her 40s or who gets heart disease in his 50s.”
Of course, there’s a very good reason to have younger, healthier people subsidize older, sicker people: One day those young people will be older and sicker as well. That is entire purpose of universal social insurance.
4. Rep. Roger Marshall (R-KS) says that poor people “don’t want health care and aren’t going to take care of themselves.”
While responding to criticism that Trumpcare would adversely affect low-income Americans who use Medicaid, Marshall explained that most of those people don’t really see the value in having health care anyway.
“Just like Jesus said, ‘The poor will always be with us,'” he said. “There is a group of people that just don’t want health care and aren’t going to take care of themselves… The Medicaid population, which is [on] a free credit card, as a group, do probably the least preventive medicine and taking care of themselves and eating healthy and exercising. And I’m not judging, I’m just saying socially that’s where they are.”
In other words, Marshall says we shouldn’t bother caring for poor people since any efforts on them would be wasted regardless.
5. Paul Ryan says he doesn’t care if Trumpcare just happens to be a massive tax cut for rich people.
During an interview on Fox News, Tucker Carlson pointed out to Paul Ryan that repealing Obamacare as he’s proposed to do it would also be a massive tax windfall to the wealthy.
“The overview here is that all the wealth [in] basically the last ten years basically has stuck to the top end, that’s one of the reasons we’ve had all this political turmoil,” Carlson pointed out. “Kind of a hard sell to say, ‘Yeah, we’re gonna repeal Obamacare but we’re gonna send more money to the people who’ve already gotten the richest over the last ten years.’ I mean, that’s what this does, no?”
Ryan’s response was a shrug.
“I’m not concerned about it because we said we were gonna repeal all the Obamacare taxes, this is one of the Obamacare taxes,” he replied.